FAISALABAD-Rift between two groups of PML-N seems widened as both Rana Sana Ullah and Ch Sher Ali-led groups have geared up for the slots of city mayor, deputy mayor, chairman district council and vice chairman.

According to reliable sources, a power PML-N committee on local bodies headed by MNA Pervaiz Malik visited Faisalabad and convened a meeting at circuit house. During the meeting MNA Mian Muhammad Farooq’s son and PML-N district president Mian Qasim Farooq laid claim to the ticket for the slot of chairman district council seat. On the hand majority of the parliamentarians belonging to the district ‘ignored’ the meeting and did not turn up.

The committee members also went to the house of State Minister Abid Sher Ali and met his father Ch Sher Ali. Duirng talks, Ch Sher Ali clearly expressed his stance that Ch Zahid Nazir, elder brother of MNA Asim Nazir is the strong candidate for the slot of district council chairman, demanding that the party leadership should keep in view all aspects before making a final decision.

A source informed that disagreement between the ruling party factions has widened to the slot of chairman district council. Earlier both the groups were fighting only for the slot of city mayor. The source said that many party workers at a meeting held at circuit house seriously protested and raised slogans against lawmakers. They alleged that the lawmakers sons, nephews and other relatives were shamefully defeated in the local bodies elections and now despite clear party policy, they are busy lobbying for their relatives.

They said that Rana Sana Ullah Khan is the minister for local bodies but he has continuously been violating the party policy, paving the way to get Razzaq Malik elected as city mayor who is the brother of MPA Malik Nawaz.

They questioned that why the minister is flouting the party policy and why the Punjab chief minister is silent over this ‘disobedience.’ The party workers reminded the PML-N committee that the party district president Qasim Farooq during the local bodies elections had been defeated by his uncle but later they reconciled with their uncle, forcing him to resign and get elected through ‘undemocratic’ way. Only member assemblies Mian Abdul Manan, Ch Asim Nazir, Rajab Ali Baloch, Azad Ali Tabbassum, Afzal Sahi, Zafar Nagra, Ajmal Asif, Rai Haider Khalid Saeed, Fakeer Hussain Dogar and Ilyas Ansari attended the meeting at circuit house.

Razzaq Malik,being considered the strongest candidate for city mayor and right hand of Rana Sana Ullah also didn’t bothered to attend the meeting. Other aspirants for the ticket including Sh Yousaf, Sh Zulfiqar and Pervaiz Kamoka attended the meeting.

Speaking on the occasion, MNA Pervaiz Malik assured the protesting of party workers that PML-N would award tickets to party workers who have struggled for strengthening the party and rendered sacrifices. However PML-N committee when reached Kashmir House, the residence of Ch Sher Ali, lawmakers including Akram Ansari, Rana Afzal Khan, Dr Nisar Jutt, Tahir Jamil, Raza Nasrullah Ghuman, Madiha Rana and former MPA Kh Islam were present there.

Meanwhile, Ch Sher Ali warned that if the PML-N leadership ignored honest workers and does provide them due right, the party would face difficulties at grass-roots level.

He emphasised that workers would have to be made strong to guarantee a strong PML-N, adding that he would not tolerate any further injustice with the party workers. Other lawmakers also made their suggestions for awarding the party tickets for the slots of city mayor, deputy city mayors, chairman district council, vice chairman district council.

Meanwhile, the PML-N committee head Pervaiz Malik announced that the arena for any slots would not be left opened and party workers would be awarded party tickets on merit. However, as the committee members left for the provincial capital Lahore, one of the PML-N faction informed that the party leadership has decided to left the arena for city mayor and district council slots open as more than three party workers and local leaders are in the run for getting the ticket.

According to Ch Sher Ali group, PM Nawaz Sharif has taken all powers regarding Faisalabad into his hands but the other group is continuously spreading different rumours. Earlier they disclosed that all authority has been given in the hands of Punjab CM Shahbaz Sharif.

Political experts, however, have advised to “see what happens next.” They also warned that if the party decided to leave the arena open for the election of city mayor and district council chairman, it would fuel the political war between Ch Sher Ali and Rana Sana Ullah groups and weaken the party.